Marine Life In Danger: Study Confirms Loss of Abundance in Caribbean

by Irma Arkus

New research confirms that marine life in naturally abundant areas has substantially declined.

Simon Fraser University scientists Isabelle Côté, John Reynolds, Michelle Paddack and Phil Molloy authored a study: “Region-wide declines in Caribbean reef fish abundance.” The authors found that it is not only overfishing that has an impact on the declining fish population, once considered unlimited and abundant, but the withdrawal of coral reefs itself.

The loss of habitat is another factor that has to be taken into account, according to the study, and the increased damage to coral reefs, primarily tied to climate change, such as acidification of water, sedimentation, disease and pollution are having an impact on an ocean belt considered invaluable in terms of habitat and fertility of marine life.

Additionally, coastal developments are increasingly causing damage to the coral reefs. Recent attempts at rehabilitation of coral reefs using core concrete fills has been a success, but only marginally so, as the programs cannot keep up with increasing damage to the coral.

Now, authors hope to uncover more information on additional coral structures. Most famous ones, and only recently uncovered are in Georgia Straight area, a marine ecosystem that has had until recently very little research attributed to. The scientists hope to uncover links of how these factor and ecosystems interact, affect fish and marine life population, and vice versa.

For more information, read here.